The effective indices of the cladding modes of optical fibers depend on the refractive index of the medium surrounding the fiber. We show experimentally and theoretically that while cladding modes with similar effective indices normally have similar refractometric sensitivities, the addition of a 50 nm thick gold sheath enhances the sensitivity of some EH modes by more than one order of magnitude while nearly completely suppressing the sensitivity of neighbouring HE modes (by three orders of magnitude, down to insignificant levels). A differential sensitivity of ∼1000 nm/(refractive index unit) is experimentally reported between adjacent EH and HE grating resonances.
Silica-based thin-film multilayers are investigated as a means to enhance the effective second-order nonlinearity induced in silica glass structures by corona poling. Structures consisting of phosphorus-doped and undoped silica glass layers exhibit second harmonic generation (SHG) that is higher by an order of magnitude compared to the SHG in bulk silica glass poled under the same conditions. When the poled structure consists of two multilayered stacks separated in space, the stacks exhibit comparable poling-induced nonlinearities. This result suggests that the poling voltage is divided between the two stacks such that simultaneous poling of multiple regions within the sample is realized.
The conformal coating of a 50 nm-thick layer of copper nanoparticles deposited with pulse chemical vapor deposition of a copper (I) guanidinate precursor on the cladding of a single mode optical fiber was monitored by using a tilted fiber Bragg grating (TFBG) photo-inscribed in the fiber core. The pulse-per-pulse growth of the copper nanoparticles is readily obtained from the position and amplitudes of resonances in the reflection spectrum of the grating. In particular, we confirm that the real part of the effective complex permittivity of the deposited nano-structured copper layer is an order of magnitude larger than that of a bulk copper film at an optical wavelength of 1550 nm. We further observe a transition in the growth behavior from granular to continuous film (as determined from the complex material permittivity) after approximately 20 pulses (corresponding to an effective thickness of 25 nm). Finally, despite the remaining granularity of the film, the final copper-coated optical fiber is shown to support plasmon waves suitable for sensing, even after the growth of a thin oxide layer on the copper surface.